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Newgarden cruises to victory in wild IndyCar race at WWTR

The Bommarito 500 at World Vast Know-how Raceway gave 24 drivers 260 laps to make a press release, and with…

By Staff , in Cruises , at August 22, 2021

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The Bommarito 500 at World Vast Know-how Raceway gave 24 drivers 260 laps to make a press release, and with a championship able to be settled within the subsequent six weeks, one other wild race came about the place Josef Newgarden captured his second win of the season, Pato O’Ward took management of the title chase, and their rivals Alex Palou and Scott Dixon ended up within the wall because of Rinus VeeKay.

Between a litany of warning durations and crashes, excessive gasoline saving performed to Newgarden’s favor as he drove the No. 2 Group Penske Chevy to a 0.5s win over O’Ward within the No. 5 Arrow McLaren SP Chevy.

Complementing the nice night time for the Bowtie and The Captain, the highest 5 was rounded out by Penske’s Will Energy who began on pole, Penske rookie Scott McLaughlin, and a relieved Sebastien Bourdais in his A.J. Foyt Racing entry. Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing’s Takuma Sato was the primary Honda driver residence in sixth.

“We wished to get again on this battle, and [I’m] so proud,” Newgarden mentioned after main 138 laps, shifting from fourth to 3rd within the standings, and taking his third WWTR win in six tries. “Group Chevy did nice, tremendous pumped with my gasoline mileage; that was put to the check. I couldn’t ask for extra. We all know that is going to be a climb these final (three) occasions, however this goes a good distance tonight.”

On the receiving finish of an inexplicable restart transfer by VeeKay, Palou’s day ended towards the wall on lap 196 whereas working within the high 10, and with the Ganassi automotive parked within the storage, O’Ward’s regular cost ahead to second on the checkered flag additionally got here with new possession of the championship lead.

“It was a really stable factors day for us,” O’Ward mentioned. “I feel we maximized what we obtained out of our automotive and our race.”

Energy’s pole didn’t final lengthy earlier than Colton Herta swept into the lead and took cost, however the Penske veteran persevered and added one other podium after profitable final weekend in Indianapolis.

“I used to be actually glad for third,” he mentioned. “We actually didn’t have a very good automotive. I obtained essentially the most out of my day.”

If Palou and Dixon have been upset on the hits they took within the bid for the championship, Herta wore a glance of disbelief after main with conviction as late as lap 185 earlier than a damaged halfshaft ended his bid to earn a primary oval victory.

“It was a driveshaft,” the Andretti Autosport driver mentioned. “Nothing I may have performed there. Man, we have been so freaking quick. I used to be feeling so good. Simply irritating when it occurs after we’re within the lead.”

Exterior the highest six, Ryan hunter-Reay was fast all night time and took seventh as one of the best Andretti performer of the night time; teammate Alexander Rossi was in for a shot on the podium till crashing late within the race on new tires.

Simon Pagenaud was the final of 4 Penske drivers to succeed in the end line, nevertheless it wasn’t for a scarcity of making an attempt. In yet one more conflict between himself and Newgarden, with the eventual race winner serving because the aggressor, Pagenaud misplaced his right-front wing, was pressured to pit for a alternative, spent a lot of the night time down a lap, and stored digging to assert eighth.

Attrition definitely helped within the case of Dalton Kellett’s run to 12th, however Bourdais’ teammate was extremely aggressive for almost all of the race and got here residence with Indy 500 winner Tony Kanaan in his mirrors.

And in 14th, Romain Grosjean had an oval debut that should have felt prefer it lasted 1000 laps because the Dale Coyne Racing with Rick Ware Racing driver executed hardcore passes to succeed in inside the highest 10, practically crashed on just a few events, and got here away with a correct understanding of what the self-discipline requires to achieve success.

It wasn’t fairly, however full credit score was earned by Chevy and its high drivers as one of the best in Honda’s camp both broke, crashed, or have been visited by grand misfortune below the lights in Madison, Illinois.

One can solely think about what’s in retailer for the title contenders when the sequence reconvenes on September 12 in Portland.



James Hinchcliffe’s nightmare season was the primary noteworthy taking place as his Andretti Autosport Honda skilled electrical points that pressured the automotive to pit lane whereas the sphere lined as much as take the beginning. The Canadian was unable to affix the sphere, shedding three laps earlier than his automotive fired.

Colton Herta tried to take the lead from Will Energy on the opening lap and charged into P1 on entry to Flip 1 on Lap 2. The primary warning of the race was required on lap 3 when Graham Rahal and Ed Jones—working side-by-side and inside inches of one another–tangled in Flip 1 as the 2 got here along with Jones stepping into the left aspect of Rahal’s automotive. Each vehicles spun and crashed into the wall, with Jones being out on the spot and Rahal limping again to the pits the place the group affected repairs.

For factors chief Alex Palou, the crashes and ahead momentum helped the Chip Ganassi driver to enhance from P21 to P14. Coming to the restart, it was Herta, Energy, Josef Newgarden, Simon Pagenaud, Marcus Ericsson, and Pato O’Ward in P6. Title contender Scott Dixon was P9. Rahal did flip just a few laps below warning however pulled in and retired the automotive.

The inexperienced flag was prepared for lap 12 however Dalton Kellett was spun from behind by Ed Carpenter, which despatched the A.J. Foyt driver onto the infield grass in Flip 3. With the sphere reorganized, the inexperienced waved on lap 16 as Herta and Energy drove away whereas Simon Pagenaud tried to go Newgarden for P3 into Flip 1 and had Newgarden flip down on him and break the right-front wing from his automotive. The particles flew again and appeared to hit a number of vehicles. A brand new warning got here on lap 17 and by lap 19, Pagenaud, Sebastien Bourdais, and Ed Carpenter pitted.

The following inexperienced got here on lap 22 whereas the yellow monitor lights flashes, which led to a couple extra laps of circulating at half pace earlier than it went inexperienced on lap 26. By Lap 30, Herta held a 0.7s lead over Energy. Ed Carpenter Racing’s Rinus VeeKay was charging, shifting as much as P10 from a P23 begin, and Palou was sitting in P11.

By lap 40, it was Herta, Energy, Newgarden, Rossi, Ericsson, and O’Ward within the high six. By Lap 53, Herta took a .5s lead and moved it out to 1.7s as Energy started shedding contact to the chief.

The following warning was on lap 56 for Carpenter who crashed closely in Flip 3. He climbed from the automotive unaided. The sector pitted on lap 58 and massive strikes have been made at Herta pitted in P1 however left in P3 as a rocket cease by Newgarden moved him to the lead and Energy adopted in P2. Palou, trailing VeeKay in P11 coming onto pit lane, obtained forward into P10, proper behind teammate Dixon. Foyt’s Sebastien Bourdais was the one driver to remain out and he inherited the lead quickly.

The lap 65 restart was a catastrophe for Dixon, Palou, and VeeKay because the three crashed in Flip 1. VeeKay, in an epic bout of purple mist, charged down the within of the 2 Ganassi vehicles and took the 2 out.

The lap 77 restart featured Newgarden sprinting away and Alexander Rossi taking P3 off of teammate Herta into Tun 1. The working order was Newgarden, Energy, Rossi, Herta, Ericsson, and O’Ward till Rossi relieved Energy of P2 on lap 79.

Probably the most enjoyable on lap 90 was Romain Grosjean who was selecting off vehicles on the best way to holding P11. He took P10 on lap 91 and set after Penske’s Scott McLaughlin. On lap 92, O’Ward obtained by Ericsson for P5 as Grosjean motored to P9.

O’Ward went ahead once more on lap 108 to take P4 from Energy. A sluggish pit cease for Ryan Hunter-Reay on lap 113 as the primary of the leaders took him from P8 to P17. Shortly after lap 130, a lot of the entrance runners pitted and after the order settled, it was Newgarden, Herta, Rossi, O’Ward and Sato concerned in a scrap. Herta, who cleared Rossi after their stops, tore after Newgarden and took P1 on lap 139. O’Ward did the identical on Rossi, shifting to P3.

Sato demoted Rossi, who was doing excessive gasoline saving, to P4 on the subsequent lap. Grosjean obtained excessive on lap 174 and took just a few laps to rebuild his pace.

By lap 175, Herta sat comfortably within the lead by 0.8s on Newgarden, 2s on O’Ward, 2.7s on Sato, 3.5s on Rossi, and 5.2s on Ericsson.

Herta pitted from the lead on lap 185 and retired with a damaged halfshaft.

Last pit stops began round lap 197 because the leaders headed in for service. A warning was required on lap 200 as Rossi crashed in Flip 2 whereas making an attempt to stand up to hurry and chase down Newgarden and O’Ward.

The lap 211 restart had Newgarden diving low to dam O’Ward as Energy, McLaughlin, Bourdais, and Sato have been in pursuit. With a necessity for all to do appreciable quantities of gasoline saving to make it to the end, the sextet held station till the checkered flag as Newgarden did himself wonders with a 3rd win of the season and massive transfer within the championship standings.

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